Tear up the Hydrangea rulebook! – the new era has arrived
While other garden favourites such as Heuchera and Echinacea have been making headlines of late with never-seen-before colours and startling new flower forms, that old stalwart the Hydrangea has been sitting relatively quietly in our borders, biding its time. With its distinctive presence, The Hydrangea has long been assured of its place in our hearts. Those magnificently huge flower heads instil pride in those who grow them, while the ability to manipulate the colour by adjusting soil acidity has kept us intrigued. With such a spectacle to enjoy, we have not only accepted having just one flush of blooms each year, but also the risk of them being sacrificed to a late-spring frost or too-harsh winter conditions. We have cherished our hydrangeas, yet still sometimes thwarted their flowering by failing to follow the rulebook and pruned our plants at the wrong time. But those days of compromise and uncertainty are coming to an end as the Hydrangea enters a new era. This beloved genus is undergoing a 21st century makeover to become a summer-long blooming, multi-tasking, indestructible superstar! The discovery and introduction of a new variety with extraordinary qualities is paving the way for the Bigleaf Hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla) to evolve into a plant that we could only fantasise about. We are talking about a Hydrangea that repeatedly blooms from June until autumn frost. A Hydrangea that produces flowers on new growth - meaning that any buds destroyed by late-spring frosts are soon replaced by new ones. A Hydrangea that is guaranteed to flower, whatever the weather! We are talking about a Hydrangea that can be enjoyed indoors as well as out, as its ability to repeat flower on new growth means we are free to take cutflowers and prune plants back at our own convenience. Oh yes, cutting the flowers from this Hydrangea of the future actually encourage the plants to produce more – it really is time to dispense with the old rulebook!
>>more>> >>continued>> For further information about this and other releases via Notcutts Nurseries: Sally Reed * [email protected] * www.notcuttsnurseries.co.uk Tel: 01394 445305 * Fax: 01394 445440
Flowering ability aside, we are talking about a strong, healthy Hydrangea that shows great prowess as a garden performer, demonstrating better disease-resistance and tolerance for much harsher winter conditions than the Hydrangeas we’ve known and loved for so long. Oh, and let’s not forget, a Hydrangea with a sturdy structure that behaves itself and sits tidily in our borders. So what is this wonderplant that is set to revolutionise our Hydrangea experience? Its name is Endless Summer ® The Original Hydrangea. This variety is the first plant to be available under the Endless Summer ® banner (yes, more will follow!), and features fresh-blue (acid soil) to lively- pink (alkaline soil) flowers. Plants are typically 90-120cm (3-4 feet) tall with equal spread. Endless Summer ® The Original Hydrangea may also be known by its botanical name Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Bailmer’. Endorsed at the highest level Endless Summer ® The Original Hydrangea arrived on UK shores nearly 10 years after its initial discovery by an employee of Bailey Nurseries, an influential wholesale nursery in Minnesota, USA. Its big break came in 1998 when renowned horticulturist and Hydrangea expert Dr. Michael Dirr saw it in trials and was the first to recognise the plant’s groundbreaking qualities, referring to the event as “a horticultural miracle” in his book Hydrangeas for American Gardens. The plant was tested for a few years and propagated to produce the quantities that Bailey Nurseries knew would be in demand once the cat got out of the bag. According to Dr. Dirr, the introduction of Endless Summer “positively impacted Hydrangea sales in the US as it opened a window of opportunity for success in areas where winter temperatures are too low or late spring frosts wreak havoc”. As incredible as the description sounds, Dr Dirr is on record with his comment “Endless Summer is as good as advertised (actually better)…”, and sites The Original as “one of the most important plant introductions of the last 50 years”. If a plant can achieve such praise and success in the harsh diversity of the American climate, just imagine the effect it and its offspring will have on Hydrangea gardening in the UK! To be exhibited at Chelsea in 2007 Visitors to the Chelsea flower show this year will have the opportunity to check out Endless Summer ® The Original Hydrangea on Notcutts’ exhibit in the Great Pavillion at stand GPF/16. It will subsequently be exhibited by Notcutts at the Suffolk Show and other gardening events throughout the summer. Availability Endless Summer ® The Original Hydrangea is widely available for retail sale during 2007 in 5 litre branded blue pots bearing the Endless Summer logo. RRP £14.99. A list of stockists can be found on ns other handy information and hints and tips for growing Endless Summer ® The Original Hydrangea. >>ends<< Further information and high-resolution images: Available from Sally Reed at Notcutts. Contact details at the bottom of this page. >>notes on following page>> >>continued>> For further information about this and other releases via Notcutts Nurseries: Sally Reed * [email protected] * www.notcuttsnurseries.co.uk Tel: 01394 445305 * Fax: 01394 445440
Notes: 1) Dr Michael Dirr is a professor of horticulture at the University of Georgia (USA). He is the author of 11 books including Hydrangeas for American Gardens (available in the UK from Timber Press) and also more than 300 scientific and popular papers and articles. His teaching, lectures, seminars, garden study tours and plant introduction programs have contributed enormously to greater horticultural awareness. He has received the highest teaching and gardening awards from numerous establishments across the USA. 2) Endless Summer ® The Original Hydrangea was discovered in St. Paul, Minnesota, USA by Vern Black, an employee of Bailey Nurseries. Bailey Nurseries is a family owned wholesale nursery distributing plants to the trade across the USA and around the world. It is one of the top wholesale nurseries in the USA. For further information about this and other releases via Notcutts Nurseries: Sally Reed * [email protected] * www.notcuttsnurseries.co.uk Tel: 01394 445305 * Fax: 01394 445440
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